A report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says that motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children ages 3 to 14 in the United States. In 2008 (the most recent year for which statistics are available), that same age group accounted for 4 percent of traffic fatalities and 8 percent of people injured in motor vehicle crashes. That means that everyday in 2008, there was an average of 4 children killed and 529 injured in vehicle collisions.
While those figures are sobering, using an appropriate child safety seat can significantly reduce the risk. Use of a child safety seat reduces fatal injuries in infants younger than 1 year old by 71 percent and 54 percent for children between the ages of 1 and 4 years old.
Choosing the right car seat is important. All children under the age of 12 should ride in the back seat. Infants up to 12 months old should be placed in a rear-facing car seat. Toddlers between 1 and 3 years old should use a front-facing harness seat while 4 to 7 year olds can use a booster seat. Children should not ride without a car seat until they are big enough for the car’s seat belts to fit them properly. A proper fit means the lap belt comes across the upper thighs and the shoulder belt comes over the shoulder and across the chest.
Car accidents in Oklahoma involving children are especially scary. If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident that was caused by the negligence of another driver, the experienced Oklahoma City accident lawyers at the Maples Law Firm can help you get the compensation you may be entitled to. Call 1-888-226-6159 to speak to an attorney about your case.